A misdemeanor crime is a type of criminal offense that is more serious than a citation but less serious than felony charges. They are less serious to moderate crimes that are associated with less serious punishments. In most states, the main distinguishing feature of a misdemeanor is that it is usually punishable by a sentence of one year maximum in a parish jail facility (not a state prison facility, which is usually reserved for felony charges).
A broad range of crimes are classified as misdemeanors. Misdemeanor crimes can range from assault and battery to property crimes and other violations. State laws vary widely with regards to which crimes are classified as misdemeanors and the penalties for these crimes.